Cambridge Coincidences Collection

Well I Never!

Professor David Spiegelhalter of Cambridge University wants to know about your coincidences!

My Wife's Family

When my future wife and I met in 1986 we got to know each other a bit, and then, had about a two year break when we didn't see each other hardly at all (she thought I was too shy and timid). In 1988, we met again through a mutual friend and began dating seriously. We found many similarities in the names in our families: Her mother's name is Della Mae- my grandmother has the same name. She has two nieces- Missy and Mandy. I have two cousins- Misty and Mandy. Her nephew's name is Galen. I have an Uncle Gaylan. Guess it was just meant to be!

Meeting Friends in the Airport

As a child, I lived in Columbia, Maryland for 5 years. We moved to Frankfurt, Gemany when I was 13. About a year and a half after living in Frankfurt, I was with a friend taking his friend to Frankfurt International Airport so he could return to the United States. As we were standing in line at the ticket counter, a girl turned around and we immediately recognized each other- she and her family lived across the street from us when we lived in Columbia, Maryland.

Remarkable link to an object over significant distance and time

Travelling from Australia (where my family lives) to Sweden with my Dad (67) to visit his homeland and upon visiting a school friend he had not seen in over 55 years, discovering the friend's wife had bought a cookbook originally belonging to my late grandmother (15 years previous) from a secondhand store (her distinctive name was written inside). The new owner of the book didn't even know of the potential link until our visit and a chance perusal through the book. She kindly gave it to me and it is now a cherished heirloom.

Invisible phone line

My partner and I seem to have some odd connection. We met two years ago. We both have daughters called Rosie in the fashion industry. Our mothers' best friends were both called Nola. Our fathers were both actors (we met on a farm in NZ, not a theatre). There is more of that sort of thing.<br /><br /> But what is most extraordinary is the number of times we call/text each other simultaneously, even after days apart. A couple of weeks ago Eliza was away working, as she often is.

eye eye

Just this second i sent an image of a close up of my eye to a friend with the caption "eye eye". I clicked send on my phone and glanced at my computer screen where for about 5 seconds there was an image (from a scrolling selection of about 300 photos i collected about 4 years ago) saying "beauty is in the EYE of the beholder"


We had an all white fluffy long-haired pet cat who had a very distinct look (grandchild of a rag doll cat). For various reasons we have him to a family who love 2 hours drive away. I moved house to another town near my old one. One day I looked out the window and saw our cat walk past my house looking very unwell and beaten up. It was so convincing I went outside and called him with the sound he used to come to me with but he had gone. I then got upset and called the family to make sure he was still with them and ok, which he was. He must have been the most amazingly perfect doppleganger.


My mother was telling my date and I about how "the butterfly is the symbol of transformation". Exactly as she said it, a butterfly fluttered outside the open window behind her. What made it even stranger was that we were 3 floors up in a top floor flat, of the highest building in the village 2 weeks ago (end of October 2013)... I.e. It's very very rare, if not unlikely, to ever see a butterfly that high up.

Ghost from the past

Our house was chosen at random in the locality by the council to have a residential survey carried out. The guy who called round was from a company in Yorkshire that the council had outsourced the work to. While we were chatting over a coffee he said he was from a certain town in Yorkshire. I told him that my husband had had a friend at university (and we are talking 30 years ago) from that town who had been killed in a car accident in the vacation of his second year. This guy went white and said 'we had all been on a night out. I was travelling in the car behind'.

Same road, miles from home 50 years later

I used to live in Kent. Paternal grandmother lived in Barnet, Uncle (mother's brother) lived in Buckhurst Hill. We would visit granny once a year, usually in spring, and when we did, we would make a trip to see uncle for an hour or so, taking us through Enfield and Ponders End. We (I, wife and family) now live in wales (different houses but within 5 miles of each other). Younger daughter has married someone whose granddad lives in Edmonton. I promised to take grandson on a train trip round london. While they were staying with granddad, I came up independently by train.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Early one morning around 5:30am I found myself thinking about President Roosevelt. I'm a bus driver and I was driving to my starting destination. When I arrived at the destination I began setting the bus up, proper signage, etc when I noticed something behind the drivers seat. There was a little green book and it was about president Roosevelt. The book was written by his son-in-law and published in the late 60's. It doesn't stop there. While on my route I was stopped at a stop light.